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Spurs issue injury update ahead of wild month

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Tottenham Hotspur has weathered an injury crisis to stay in the thick of the Premier League title race, and is getting some of its men back in the fold.

Christian Eriksen and Mousa Dembele have been boosted by the international break, Mauricio Pochettino revealed on Thursday.

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Dele Alli, Danny Rose, and Jan Vertonghen are going to require a bit more healing, though, via the BBC:

“Still maybe 10 days more for Dele Alli and Danny Rose is the same, one week more. Jan Vertonghen is a little bit longer. But the most important thing is that we start to recover players. It will be a tough month of competition for us.”

Spurs are two points back of the trio leading the Premier League ahead of a tricky month for all contenders.

Tottenham visits improving West Ham United on Saturday before heading to PSV Eindhoven and hosting Manchester City. A League Cup date with West Ham follows before a visit to Wolves and a return date with PSV. Then Palace, and another international break.

Get well soon, right?

Kane double puts Spurs in fourth

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  • Kane bags brace
  • Lucas Moura lively in win
  • Huddersfield remains 20th

Harry Kane scored a pair of goals to lead Tottenham Hotspur past Huddersfield Town at the John Smith’s Stadium on Saturday.

Spurs were without Dele Alli and Christian Eriksen in the win.

Spurs climb fourth, ahead of rivals Arsenal on goal differential, while Huddersfield sits dead last with two points.

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Jonas Lossl stopped Harry Kane 1v1 in the 10th minute in the best early chance, a sequence which saw an injury Huddersfield star defender Terrence Kongolo.

Kane found the score sheet in the 25th minute, rising to nod a perfect Kieran Trippier cross past Lossl moments after Lucas Moura was denied a penalty cry.

Danny Rose drew a penalty kick in the 33rd minute, and Kane left little doubt with his rocket chance.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Kane, Rose: Stopping slump all about Spurs’ mentality

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Tottenham Hotspur had to look — and dig — deep within themselves in order to snap their three-game losing skid (losses to Watford, Liverpool and Inter Milan) with a 2-1 win over Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday, according to Harry Kane and Danny Rose.

[ MORE: Kane, Lamela propel Spurs to skid-snapping victory over Brighton ]

It wasn’t about tactics, it wasn’t about quality or transfers made (or not made); it was all about getting back to the right mentality — the one instilled by Mauricio Pochettino in guding the club to three straight top-four finishes. The level of commitment and application had dropped in recent weeks, Kane said after the game, which meant they had to get back to being themselves once again — quotes from the BBC:

“Today was about mentality, getting around the pitch, pressing high and harder and I think we did that.

“We could have put it to bed and won 3-0 or 4-0 but it’s good to get back to winning ways. The gaffer will be pleased and we can build on this.

“I didn’t see the penalty in real time, but I spoke to one of their players and they said it was handball. Sometimes you get it and sometimes you don’t, but it was given and it worked well for us.”

Pochettino was delighted to get the three points, but to concede such an avoidable goal during stoppage time is clearly the part of the game which sticks out most in his mind — quotes also from the BBC:

“For everyone who watched the game, they were wondering what we were doing. The way we conceded was crazy. One minute from the end, we should be more vigilant and focused.

“To allow them in that position, it is painful to concede. We won but need to work and realize we can not concede this type of goal.”

As for the much-discussed fatigue which Spurs are said to be battling due to a summer of World Cup action, and a shallow squad combined with early-season injuries, Rose says no one at the club is buying it. Spurs’ left back even went so far as to say, “Fatigue is a bit of a myth” — quotes also from the BBC:

“We’re over the moon with the win. It was a sloppy goal at the end, and I’ll have to look at myself and my positioning.

“[On fatigue] The manager is a big believer that it’s all in your mind and he prepares us in the right way every week.

“He looks at how much we’ve done and how far we’ve run and he prepares us right for each game. Fatigue is a bit of a myth and we don’t pay a lot of attention to that.”

Well, that’s certainly one way to look at fatigue, even if it flies in the face of everything every scientist and medical professional has ever observed. That should work out perfectly for Spurs in the long run.

Spurs snap skid at rain-soaked Brighton

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  • Murray concedes PK
  • Kane converts it
  • Lamela put it away
  • Spurs skid ends

Harry Kane and Erik Lamela score on a rain-soaked Amex Stadium pitch as Tottenham Hotspur put an end to its losing ways with a 2-1 win over Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday.

Goalkeeper Paulo Gazzinaga made his first start since last season’s 1-0 win over Crystal Palace, and came within a Anthony Knockaert stoppage time goal of another clean sheet.

Spurs move fifth with 10 points, ending their three-match losing streak in all competitions. Brighton is 13th with six points.

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Clad in their green kits, Spurs nearly went ahead in the first few moments but Toby Alderweireld‘s inspired ball bounded through the box.

Spurs had most of the ball but little danger when Kieran Trippier‘s free kick was blocked by the raised arm of Glenn Murray inside the box.

That sent Kane to the spot, and the big Englishman did not miss his chance.

A sleepy, sloppy match opened up a bit with Christian Eriksen‘s promising curler that missed far post in the 54th minute.

Lamela made it 2-0 with a pinpoint low shot in the final 15 minutes, and Brighton’s hopes for a draw were dashed on a rainy day at the Amex.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

Knockaert made it 2-1 in the third minute of stoppage, and then was saved by Gazzaniga a minute later.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Key battles for Tottenham vs. Liverpool

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Tottenham Hotspur host Liverpool on Saturday (Watch live, 7:30 a.m. ET on NBCSN and NBCSports.com) in a battle of last season’s third- and fourth-place finishers jockeying for the right to make a genuine challenge to Manchester City’s stranglehold on the Premier League title.

[ MORE: Premier League preview: Tottenham Hotspur vs. Liverpool ]

Tottenham were victorious at Wembley Stadium — site of Saturday’s clash — to the tune of 4-1 last October, courtesy of a Harry Kane brace and single goals from Dele Alli and Son Heung-min, before the two sides played to a memorable 2-2 draw at Anfield in February.

Three points for the home side would see Spurs pull level to the Reds on 12 points, while an away win would open the gap between Jurgen Klopp and Mauricio Pochettino‘s to six points.


Harry Kane vs. Virgil Van Dijk

It’s the world most expensive defender taking on the center forward who would likely command the largest transfer should he hit the market. That’s blockbuster stuff, and rightly so as both Kane and Van Dijk so nearly have every quality you’d expect to see from the ideal player in their respective positions. Kane possesses the size, strength, hold-up and passing ability, craftiness and finishing touch to put any half-chance into the back of the net. Van Dijk, on the other hand, can engage Kane in the kind of physical battle that’s most likely to wear him out over 90 minutes, while simultaneously sticking right alongside him in the open field. Kane won’t often find himself too far from Van Dijk on Saturday, which could mean he’s in for a long, hard day.


Danny Rose or Ben Davis vs. Mohamed Salah

Pochettino has a big choice to make at left (wing) back — as is the case nearly every time out. Typically blessed with a pair of options which offer a night-and-day contrast to one another, Salah is the rare instance of an opponent for whom the Spurs boss truly needs a more well-rounded option. Rose’s attacking tendencies fit part of one gameplan that says the best way to defend Salah is to pin him back by overlapping on his side, but his lack of defensive discipline will almost certainly see him caught out of position a number of times, for which Salah will surely punish him. Davies’ defensive discipline will keep him in the right spots to at least slow Salah and make him work, but his lack of range and inability to change direction won’t allow him to stay in front of the Egyptian — not to mention all of the wide attacking play Spurs lose when he’s picked over Rose, thus inviting constant pressure on the backline as a whole.


Mousa Dembele vs. Naby Keita

Dembele is the soccer equivalent of American football’s “downhill runner”: the type of player who needs the first step or two to be unimpeded in order to generate a bit of moment, who’s then nearly impossible to slow down or take the ball off him once he begins to barrel forward. In his six-plus seasons at Spurs, Dembele has singlehandedly dragged his side to victory on dozens of days, while he’s been rendered completely ineffective on just as many others. It’s tempting to make Eric Dier — who’s far less comfortable and dynamic with the ball at his feet — the target of a press, but it’s Dembele who can be slowed to a crawl and subsequently blunt the entire Spurs attack. Keita will again be the one tasked with triggering the Reds’ high press, and he should made to stick on Dembele from the first to final whistles.